On Sunday night, Student Action announced 14 candidates for ASUC Senate for the upcoming April election.
ASUC party Student Action has represented a variety of students with different identities and backgrounds, but the party historically runs candidates from the Greek, engineering and Jewish communities. The candidates for this election are Zach Carter, Isabella Chow, Stephanie Cong, Justin Greenwald, Saakshi Goel, Nikhil Harish, James Li, Gabriel Louis-Kayen, Amma Sarkodee-Adoo, Karina Sun, Andy Theocharous, William Wang, Anne Zepecki and Neil McClintick, who is a former Daily Californian opinion columnist.
“I’m really looking forward to this election, though it is a daunting process,” Sarkodee-Adoo said. “It is something that I wouldn’t have done if I didn’t feel compelled by my passion for these issues.”
A campus sophomore majoring in political science, Sarkodee-Adoo is running on a platform to increase diversity in the Greek community, involve more students in city politics and boost diversity in clubs on campus.
Through her involvement with the Alpha Phi sorority, Sarkodee-Adoo said her firsthand experience will help her incorporate more tolerance and inclusivity into the Greek community. She plans to improve the representation of the National Pan-Hellenic Council, which represents nine historically Black fraternities and sororities, and the Multi-Cultural Greek Council within ASUC spaces in order to make sure their funding and space reservation needs are met.
Cong, a sophomore majoring in economics, is running on a platform to increase professional development opportunities, boost financial literacy and adapt the student organization funding mechanism for business clubs to mirror the federated funding system of engineering clubs.
“I want to empower students to pursue what they want to do on campus,” Cong said. “I would never want financial literacy to inhibit people from doing what they want to do.”
Cong plans to incorporate an optional seminar on financial literacy into Golden Bear Orientation, and she hopes to reorganize the My Finances page on CalCentral to make the information easier to understand for students.
Louis-Kayen is a freshman majoring in political science and economics, and he is campaigning to provide more resources for pre-law students, promote student access to basic needs support and address issues surrounding campus climate and safety.
Louis-Kayen hopes to increase student representation within administrative circles focused on student safety, such as the Compliance, Accountability, Risk, and Ethics Committee, and to collaborate with the city to increase safety in certain areas of Berkeley.
“I live on Southside, and though Southside is highly populated, it’s low on lighting,” Louis-Kayen said. “I want to work with the city to prioritize lighting for students to feel safer.”
Goel’s campaign focuses on accessibility to sexual violence prevention training, better utilizing of spaces on campus and improving the experience of South Asian students and international students. A junior majoring in media studies, Goel wants to use her own experiences as an international student from New Delhi to be a “liaison” for international students, along with South Asian students.
In addition, Goel wants to bring sustainable, permanent businesses to locations such as Martin Luther King Jr. Student Union, or MLK, and Lower Sproul Plaza. There are currently four vacant spaces in MLK, she said. Goel also wants to hold farmers markets on Lower Sproul in an effort to bring more local businesses to campus.
“Every single platform that I have currently emerges from some sort of frustration,” Goel said. “Coming to college is a transformative experience, but it can also be turbulent.”
Voting for the ASUC elections will take place April 9-11.